Citizen by El Bocho

IMGP8202-el-bocho

I’ve deliberately used a wide shot here so you can see the art work in relation to the surrounds. Top right you can see two of the major characters used by El Bocho, one of the melancholy looking girls known as “Citizens” and further right, “Little Lucy”

The beanie of the girls head says “Liebe in Beton” ( Love in concrete?), and most of these fugures have similar sayings.

Little Lucy on the other hand is based on a Czech TV show called “Little Lucy – Fear of the Street”. Her hobby is killing her cat and here you see her pulling it apart.

http://flic.kr/p/nF8W73

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Berliner Mauer

Berliner Mauer

Getting towards the end of my time in Berlin I thought it only appropriate to put this up, Berliner Mauer or the Berlin Wall.

It made me feel a bit old as historically speaking I was alive at the time the wall was constructed, lived through the years of its use, and remember when it came down.

Since being in Berlin I have read and heard more of the history of the wall, and the societies it created in both the west and the east (ost). During our month in Berlin we lived in what was the East (Prenzlauer) and this section of the wall is about a dozen blocks away.

Having heard plenty of the history of the time from those that lived on both sides of the wall, it makes a fascinating if painful read. http://bit.ly/1mr1oak

http://flic.kr/p/nBuUcr

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Herman Bar

Two Swedes and an Australian sit down in a craft beer bar in Berlin run by a Belgian. What could possibly go wrong? #craftbeer

http://bit.ly/1iIPXFk

Although I didn’t go to a huge number of craft beer places while in Berlin, this is one of the best for its variety of very good beers. Bart really knows his stuff, and apart from “Taras Boulba Extra Hoppy Ale” ( a sort of IPA), I had a couple of Belgian stouts, Buffalo and Hercule, just to keep the cold out you understand.

“If we drink we will die
and if we don’t drink we will die
So we might as well say ‘what the hell!’
and let our glasses clink”
– From the Yul Brynner movie “Taras Bulba”

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Käthe Kollwitz museum

Käthe Kollwitz museum

It would be difficult to live in Prenzlauer for a month and not come across the name Käthe Kollwitz. There is a street and a platz, and a large statue of her in the berg ( flic.kr/p/ned3GC ).

Elsewhere an enlarged reproduction of her sculpture ‘Mother with her Dead Son’ is the centre piece (and only piece) in the Neue Wache ( flic.kr/p/ntfSgM ).

As an artist she is a firm favourite of my daughters so today we trekked across town to the Käthe Kollwitz museum. This is part art gallery with some great pieces including the original ‘Mother with her Dead Son’.

It is also part history museum, her son Peter died in the first world war and grandson Peter died in the second world war. Käthe’s anti-war stance and pro-socialist leanings eventually saw her banned from exhibiting in Germany so this space is one that is well worth a visit from artists and historians alike.

http://flic.kr/p/nyeUCL

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Central atrium Berggruen Museum

Central atrium Berggruen Museum

Terrific day at Berggruen Museum and the associated gallery at Sammlung Scharf-Gerstenberg. Berggruen has the annex under renovation at the moment so the Paul Klee part of the exhibition is housed across the road at Sammlung Scharf-Gerstenberg. .
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This view is looking up into the Museum dome with a sculpture by Alberto Giacometti (http://bit.ly/1oAgz0l ).
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The museum has three floors of Picasso’s arranged in chronological order and a fabulous audio tour. ( http://bit.ly/1oAgz0o… ) ?

http://flic.kr/p/nyn1YX

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United enemies.

United enemies

United Enemies, by the German artist Thomas Schütte in the gardens of the Berggruen Museum. (http://bit.ly/1iyj6aw…). These two sculptures have been shown in Central Park, New York and in the Kensington Gardens, London. They appear to show political enemies tied together, but rather than heroic seeming, they appear in pain or in confusion.

http://flic.kr/p/nw5qYN

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Kunsthaus Tacheles

Kunsthaus Tacheles

This is Kunsthaus Tacheles, or Art House Tacheles. These days it is a deteriorating shell, but like much of this sort of of complex its history makes fascinating reading, from days as an early style of department store, to being the central office for the Nazi SS in WWII. Currently owned by a bank ( HSH Nordbank ) it will be fascinating to see what eventually happens to it. The mural asking “How long is now” seems a perfect question for the complex. http://bit.ly/1stmE0R

http://flic.kr/p/nxMdpj

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Berlin Hauptbahnhof

Berlin Hauptbahnhof

If you have a thing about trains and transport generally then you might find your inner geek with Berlin Hauptbahnhof. Its like a five level glass cathedral to train travel. I say five levels as ‘five floors” wouldn’t really give the right perspective of how big it is. This is the top level where the S-bahn and long distance trains arrive and leave from. The lowest level is 15m underground and has services such as the U-bahn. In between are a variety of transport options plus the sort of boutique, food and general shops and restaurants you would find in any large modern shopping centre.

http://flic.kr/p/nvi4Tb

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Fraternal Kiss

Fraternal Kiss

The East Side Gallery is a collection of artworks painted on the remnants of the Berlin Wall as it runs along the River Spree. The one I am in front off front off is by the Russian painter Dmitri Vrubel, called “My God, Help Me to Survive This Deadly Love”. All up 105 art works were originally painted.

It is well worth reading about the Gallery and the conflicts surrounding it – http://bit.ly/1g2e9rt

http://flic.kr/p/nytjMD

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